Winter Letter of Love: Ways to Practice Gratitude

“Dearly beloved,
 We are gathered here today 2 get through
 This thing called life.”

- Prince 


Breathing in I calm myself. Breathing out I smile.  
In the beginning there is you, in the middle there is you, in the end there is you.

Everyday seems to pass faster than the last. Weeks meld into months with a few breaths. I wake up and go to bed with two predominant thoughts: Let go. Be Grateful.

Letting go of little things, big things, and all things in between. Expectations … serious and silly. Friendships … when people grow apart. Sadness … when a loved one dies.

Practicing gratitude alleviates life’s disappointments. It helps us deal with our challenges — especially the constant process of letting go. Granted, some days it’s hard to feel grateful when faced with unexpected disappointments or news of injustice. 

Gratitude is the ultimate healer; an emotion that is so closely linked to love that they seem like soulmates. In order to stay sane in the chaos I have been taking moments each day to count my blessings. 

Here are a few inquiries for you:
1. Start by paying attention to all the things that you are asked to surrender to on a daily basis. 
2. Are you able to let go, or do you hold on?   
3. Can you refocus on gratitude in these moments? 
4. And, What are you grateful for?

Here is a little snippet from my grateful list:
- Love notes from my daughter and cuddles
- I love you’s
- Laughter
- My work
- Moving my body
- Breathing
- Holding hands
- The warm sun on my face
- My mom; her wisdom, sensitivity and her heart
- My sisters and their deep caring
- My papa and his humor
- A warm cup of tea in the morning
- Meditation
- Learning
- The ability to change my mind
- Music
- Birdsong
- Seeing people be kind to one another
- The farmers' market and the means to buy food that nourishes me and my family
- Eye contact
- Being human
- YOU.

This fall one of my best friends was diagnosed with breast cancer and is in the middle of intensive treatment. I and another good friend of her’s have set up this GoFundMe page to support her. Any amount will help. Thank you.

With a grateful heart,

Lila